thrown into the fire

RobinBird75

In the Brooder
Dec 4, 2020
1
15
15
Hi everyone! How is it the first forum I ever join is for chickens?!? Kinda funny.. During quarantine my boyfriend made me a shangri-la coop. I live in northeastern Massachusetts and I did a ton of research online, including this site to get exactly what I wanted. My coop should easily fit about 10-12 chickens, but my town only allows 6. I started the chick journey in March 2020. I've already eaten 2 roosters (not allowed). I had one chick never develop correctly. I brought two new ones into the flock to supplement when they were still young. I do enjoy my chickens. Lost a white one to a chicken hawk a couple of weeks ago after all the leaves fell.
Here's where it gets interesting... I signed on a new 5 acre property this week and the previous owners couldn't figure out how to move their chickens and coop the distance so I told them I would take them on. Now I find myself with poorly cared for chickens in an OK coop with a horrible run. There were about 21 on the day of signing with a dead one in the coop. Can't make it up. Their nesting area is awful. They leave eggs everywhere. Not their fault. I spent dusk at the property today (it's a total rehab and we can't live there yet) and discovered about 6 chickens living in the trees. We expect our first snow of the season tomorrow.
Here's my question for the chicken folks here... I want to abandon the current coop and turn another shed on the property at higher ground towards the backyard into the coop - there is a full fence to keep anyone who isn't going to fly out, in. The current run has no coverage and isn't cared for and smells awful - it sits at the driveway (even though there's 5 acres) so the entryway to the house/property is poopy smelly. They don't appear to be free-rangers at all, which makes me sad since the run is so bad. Will chickens 'learn' to be free and come home if the home is different? Or should I continue to coop them and transition them to the new coop as its ready and leave the old one sort of 'open' to attempt to catch the others, maybe? I would be willing to add an automatic door to the old coop temporarily to attempt to secure it as we can. ?? I don't want to be a bad chicken mom - but I'm not sure what the best answer is here...help.
 

Hei 20

Free Ranging
Oct 8, 2020
1,926
10,851
501
Hi everyone! How is it the first forum I ever join is for chickens?!? Kinda funny.. During quarantine my boyfriend made me a shangri-la coop. I live in northeastern Massachusetts and I did a ton of research online, including this site to get exactly what I wanted. My coop should easily fit about 10-12 chickens, but my town only allows 6. I started the chick journey in March 2020. I've already eaten 2 roosters (not allowed). I had one chick never develop correctly. I brought two new ones into the flock to supplement when they were still young. I do enjoy my chickens. Lost a white one to a chicken hawk a couple of weeks ago after all the leaves fell.
Here's where it gets interesting... I signed on a new 5 acre property this week and the previous owners couldn't figure out how to move their chickens and coop the distance so I told them I would take them on. Now I find myself with poorly cared for chickens in an OK coop with a horrible run. There were about 21 on the day of signing with a dead one in the coop. Can't make it up. Their nesting area is awful. They leave eggs everywhere. Not their fault. I spent dusk at the property today (it's a total rehab and we can't live there yet) and discovered about 6 chickens living in the trees. We expect our first snow of the season tomorrow.
Here's my question for the chicken folks here... I want to abandon the current coop and turn another shed on the property at higher ground towards the backyard into the coop - there is a full fence to keep anyone who isn't going to fly out, in. The current run has no coverage and isn't cared for and smells awful - it sits at the driveway (even though there's 5 acres) so the entryway to the house/property is poopy smelly. They don't appear to be free-rangers at all, which makes me sad since the run is so bad. Will chickens 'learn' to be free and come home if the home is different? Or should I continue to coop them and transition them to the new coop as its ready and leave the old one sort of 'open' to attempt to catch the others, maybe? I would be willing to add an automatic door to the old coop temporarily to attempt to secure it as we can. ?? I don't want to be a bad chicken mom - but I'm not sure what the best answer is here...help.
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DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
34,613
282,132
1,642
NY Southern Tier
My Coop
My Coop
Hello and welcome to BYC! :frow Glad you joined.
Once the new coop is ready, transfer everyone to it and lock them in for a week to home them to it. I would inspect them carefully for any ectoparasites and treat if you find them before transferring them to your new coop.
You are going to have to win the trust of the tree huggers. In the meantime, just keep feeding and watering them.
You will still need somewhere for the birds to spend the winter. Are you planning to build a large covered run?
Set fire to the old coop and shovel out as much of the manure as you can. Move it to another location on the property and compost it by adding lots of leaves, grass and other high carbon compostable material.
 
Last edited:

BlueBaby

Chicken math has me!
Premium Feather Member
5 Years
Mar 21, 2016
17,968
97,141
1,462
Maricopa, AZ. (near Phoenix)
Hello, and welcome! That flock is lucky to have you come along to get thing's right for them. If you are bringing your current flock, keep them separate from the one's that are coming with the new property until you at least know that they aren't sick or have some type of disease. You don't want your current flock to catch anything from them. Good luck!
 

EmmaRainboe

🙄🤚💙Ameraucana Enthusiast💜
Premium Feather Member
Jul 30, 2020
15,647
145,243
1,376
Washington
Welcome to BYC! So glad you decided to join us! :celebrate

I agree with @penny1960 and @DobieLover

Once the new coop is done put them in it. It's so good they left their chicks with you, they clearly didn't have the time to take care of them. I trust the chickens are in better hands now.

Welcome to BYC! If you ever need anyother help, don't hesitate to ask! So many amazing experienced people on here!
 

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